Mosasaur Bites and Limpet Scrapes

For a little while, Mosasaurus maximus was my labmate. The sharp-toothed marine predator was an inoffensive neighbor, though — no doubt because only the fossilized bones, coated in beeswax to stop the destructive creep of pyrite disease, remained.

The mosasaur’s skull sat in the prep lab of the New Jersey State Museum. During my time as a volunteer there, I could hardly walk by the skull without slowing my pace to admire the marine lizard’s 66-million-year-old bones. I was especially fascinated by the set of secondary teeth nestled between the mosasaur’s upper jaws – short rows of sharp teeth jutting from the pterygoid bones near the back of the mouth. These small, sharp teeth pierced and held prey as the mosasaur

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